Quick Tip:
How to Avoid Computer Viruses

To keep your computer virus-free, the starting point is to install antivirus software … and update its virus definitions regularly. Scan email attachments from people you know, and NEVER open attachments from people you don't.

Although it's commonly believed that viruses spread via downloads from the Internet or through email attachments, floppy disks and other storage media, like Zip disks, can also be to blame. So always scan disks and other media – even new shrink-wrapped software – for viruses before installing any program or opening any file. And buy only legitimate software. Don't accept "free" pirated software from friends. Aside from the fact that it's illegal, this is a sure way to become infected.

It's nearly impossible to be infected with viruses through PLAIN-TEXT email. Most are spread in email with attachments – either rich-text email, HTML email, or email with attached applications. These applications can include Word documents with macros, so set Word to warn you if a file contains them.

These precautions will minimize the risk of infecting your computer … and will keep you from spreading viruses to others.

The Professional Writers’ Alliance

The Professional Writers’ Alliance

At last, a professional organization that caters to the needs of direct-response industry writers. Find out how membership can change the course of your career. Learn More »

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Published: March 19, 2007

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